Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Twelve grown men packed into a twelve passenger van for a Central Texas BBQ tour that would take us to seven different BBQ joints before it was over. Before it began, we packed ourselves full of steak, booze and visions of sugarplums the night before, followed by water and Tylenol as the van left Dallas at 8:00 a.m. much to the dismay of most involved. Three and a half hours later we had arrived at Louie Mueller BBQ where most of these guys would be introduced to real Texas style BBQ for the first time. I will not attempt to relive every moment of the day, but here are some of the highlights.
Louie Mueller, Taylor
After sampling the incredible beef ribs and perfect brisket at Louie Mueller, I was worried that we may have hit the high point in our first stop. The smoky black pepper stayed with me for the rest of the day.
Southside Market, Elgin
I tried the mutton ribs at Southside for the first time. The meat chewy, but less gamey than I'm used to. It was the best tasting mutton I've sampled. The chicken was damn fine to, and I'm not really a smoked poultry disciple. The sausage here was the favorite for many on the trip.
Smitty's Market, Lockhart
Smitty's may have some chewy clod, but every inch of the thick pork chops is worth savoring. The sweet glazed pork ribs were phenomenal, and were mentioned fondly the rest of the weekend.
Black's Barbecue, Lockhart
The turkey at Black's has phenomenal smoke flavor. The brisket here made heads turn as I brought it to the table, and the words "damn good" were mumbled from full mouths all around. This brisket was some of the best I've had anywhere.
Kreuz Market, Lockhart
The brisket here is just so fatty, but the spice and smoke in the jalapeno cheese links makes up for it.
Prime Rib, Kreuz
I got the slab of prime rib more for affect than my affection for it. I should have gotten the clod.
City Market, Luling
Everything at City Market was good, but none of it rose above the ribs at Smitty's or the brisket at Black's.
Franklin BBQ, Austin
The next morning, the boys awoke to whole brisket from Franklin BBQ. As I sliced it on a patio table overlooking the hotel pool, a crowd of blood shot eyes gathered around to marvel. I did everything I could do to oversell this hunk of beef, but upon first bite, everyone agreed that this was the best brisket of the weekend, and probably their lives.
Even the manliest of men succumb to BBQ overload much more rapidly than I do, but the groom-to-be showed his fortitude when he demanded that we continue on to City Market in Luling as our last stop. I was at once proud, and happy that I was giving this guided tour to a man who truly deserved it. I also learned that the brisket at Franklin BBQ is still heavenly, and can help you stare down the worst of hangovers. There was not a single healthy appetite at the table when the meal began, but the brisket just kept going down.
The best of the weekend, not in any particular order:
Brisket: Black's, Louie Mueller, Franklin
Sausage: Southside, Kreuz
Ribs: Smitty's (pork), Louie Mueller (beef)
Pork: Smitty's (chop), Franklin (pulled)
- BBQ Snob
Posted by BBQ Snob at 7:56 AM
Each joint is judged on the essence of Texas 'cue...sliced brisket and pork ribs. Sausage is only considered if house made. Sauce is good, but good meat needs no adornment to satisfy. Each review can only be based on specific cuts of meat on that particular day. Finally, if the place fries up catfish or serves a caesar salad, then chances are they aren't paying enough attention to the pits, so we mostly steered clear.
-THE PROPHETS OF SMOKED MEAT
-THE PROPHETS OF SMOKED MEAT